Monday, March 1, 2010

Preservation Link Roundup 3/1/10

According to the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association, March is National Frozen Food Month.

Tigress in a Jam is quite proud of the plum jelly she put up last October (Jam on It: Plum Hot Jelly & Almond Butter). I always say that canning provides you with two senses of accomplishment. The first you enjoy immediately as the canning lids ping during cooling. It feels good seeing the finished jars filled with all sorts of goodies. You get to revisit that feeling when, months later, you open those cans.

Well Preserved learns that they don't have to compost all of their vegetable scraps, but can save them to make vegetable stock (A Butcher Opened My Eyes to Vegetables with an Option Better than Composting). This is absolutely a great way to use vegetable scraps. If you don't have enough vegetable scraps for immediate use, you can freeze them to use later. Carrots, onions and celery are particularly useful as you can use them for vegetable stock and protein stocks.

You might even choose to keep mushrooms separate so that you can make a mushroom stock (great for mushroom risotto, other rice dishes and soups).

Of course, vegetable stocks can be pressure canned for shelf stable storage.

If you want to advertise your canning prowess via a t-shirt or reusable bag, Cafe Press has a nice selection (Food Preservation).

Food in Jars has some excellent suggestions for playing with spices in canning (Season to Taste).
But I do want you to know that it’s okay to gently tweak the spices. If you know that you can’t handle a great deal of heat in your food, please, please reduce the amount of chili or cayenne that the recipe calls for. If you’re a cinnamon fiend, feel free to increase the amount you include in your blueberry jam. Also, keep in mind that a small amount of spice can increase in flavor over time, so if you’re making something in July that you don’t plan on eating until February or March, adjust accordingly. Most of all, remember that you’re making those pickles or that chutney for you, and so the way it tastes should always, always please you.
Might I also add that you should use mostly whole, cracked or broken spices, not ground (as they make brines, jellies and jams cloudy). But, definitely! And don't forget those fresh herbs!

No comments:

Post a Comment